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WOW! Wild Over WorkCareer Education Careers Conference 2008 Madison, Wisconsin Presenters: Sheila Urban Smith and Laura Allen Michigan State University Extension
The future is now . . . A future president of the United States is in a classroom today. Seated next to her may be a future salesperson, a manager of a manufacturing plant, a journalist, a doctor, a steelworker, and a scientist. These children need to learn vital skills now so they are prepared for whatever profession they choose later in life. National School-to-Work Learning and Information Center
Workshop Goals • To understand the foundation of workforce and career preparation research for school-age children. • To become aware of resources. • To experience career activities. • To apply activities and experiences to your setting. • To leave you feeling • “wild over work!”
What is Workforce Preparation? • Process of preparing to enter the workforce • Series of learning experiences starting in early childhood and continuing throughout adult life • Prepares the way for later career decision making
What is Developmentally Appropriate? • Considers the whole child • Integrates curriculum domains • Focus is active vs. passive • Allows work in small groups • Develops social interaction skills • Contains relevant, meaningful, & engaging content • Fosters positive attitudes toward learning • Allows for acquisition of important knowledge& skills
Career Developmental Tasks for School-Age Children • Develop self-awareness of interests, values, abilities, and personal qualities. • Become aware of career options and explore a variety of options. • Acquire knowledge of workers and their role and appreciate the value of work. • Develop attitudes that support competence, cooperation, and achievement. • Develop an understanding of the relationship of interests and values to occupational choices. • Learn decision-making strategies.
Important Points to Consider • Focus on skills that would contribute to success in any job. • Take into account how children develop and learn. • Must be meaningful now and to future success. • Emphasize exposure to options vs. • making final choices
Focus on Employability Skills • Secretary’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills - SCANS (1991) • Workforce Competencies • information, resources, interpersonal skills, systems, and technology • Foundation Skills • basic skills, thinking skills, and personal qualities
Did You Know? • The 2005 Cherry Commission Report stresses “the need for learning environments with high expectations for youth that provide them with opportunities to strengthen skills in creativity, risk taking, responsibility, and adaptability skills that will allow them to compete in an economy that values entrepreneurship.” • According to data from Junior Achievement, entrepreneurial skills are best built and maintained by focusing efforts on youth age 12 – 19. “This is the age at which today’s young people begin to examine the connections between their skills and a potential career.” Junior Achievement, Youth Development in the 21st Century
Each M & M Color Represents a Category Share a personal experience for each M & M GREEN Personal Goal BROWN Career Interest YELLOW Hobby or Interest ORANGE Money Management Experience RED Money Fact BLUE Personal Accomplishment
Michigan 4-H Pathways to Career Education http://web1.msue.msu.edu/cyf/youth/career.html • Exploring Careers • After High School • The Job • Entrepreneurship • Resources
National 4-H Cooperative Curriculum System http://www.4-hcurriculum.org/ • Be the E, Entrepreneurship (Grades 7-12) • Get in the Act! - Workforce Readiness (Grades 6–9) • Self Assessment, Teamwork & Critical Thinking Skills • WOW! Wild Over Work • Work Exploration, (Grades K-6)
Designed to empower youth with the knowledge, skills and mindsets to meet the challenges of work and community in the 21st century. Grades 7-12 Be the “e” Entrepreneurship
Defining Entrepreneurship • IT IS YOUR PASSION!!! • It means not settling for things the way they are, but looking for a better way • See an opportunity & take it • See a problem & fix it
BE THE “e” Levels • Love it! • Plan it! • Do it!
Level One – Love It! • Exploring entrepreneurship • Is it for you? • Identifying talents and interests • Defining business vision • Are you passionate about your plan?
Level Two – Plan It! • Practicing skills • Business and economics • language & culture • Getting started • Planning, organizing, evaluating goals & services & gathering information • Promotion • strategies for using information • Legal issues
Level Three – Do It! • Marketing • Finance • Ethics • Putting it together • Business plan presentations
Activities presented in the context of a movie set Helps youth recognize their learning styles and personal qualities CD - Youth make “real life choices” using video scenarios in on the job choices game & complete a “True Colors” type activity Get in the Act!
MSUE 4-H Youth DevelopmentCommunications Toolkit • Fun Skill-Building Activities to Do with Young People age 12 and up • Written Communication • Vocal Expression & Public Speaking • Visual Communication & Graphic Design • Video, Media & Technology Available through the MSU Bulletin Office Item # 4H 1560
WOW! is for All! • Age group • Early elementary • Middle elementary • Middle school • Settings • After-School Programs • Community centers • Classrooms
WOW! for Youth Ages 5-12 WOW! Goals: • Develop an awareness of the wide range of career options available and the education and skills required for them. • Develop an understanding of self as a worker and in relation to potential career choices. • Develop attitudes of respect and appreciation toward all workers and their contributions to society. • Develop skills for exploring potential career choices in greater depth. • Develop a vision for “seeing myself in the future.”
WOW! Big Ideas • All work is valuable. • Not all work is paid. • Workforce skills are those that can be applied in many settings. • It’s important to explore many options. • People can match their skills interests to find jobs they can do. • Many factors influence future career decisions.
WOW! Curriculum Themes Goals
Work Around Me • Children explore how they and the people around them work to “get the job done.” • Additional key concepts include: • everybody works • people in a group need to work together • work can be fun • work can relate to their interests and skills
Work in My Community • Children learn about the people and jobs needed to make their communities function. • Additional key concepts include: • all jobs are important • all workers are important and deserve respect • many people do volunteer work in their communities
Work Around the World • Children learn about the similarities, differences, and connections they have with work around the world. • Additional key concepts include: • people depend on others around the world for products they use in everyday life • things that happen in one part of the country or world may affect lots of other people
Work in My Future • Children begin to explore career options and what they can do now to prepare for the future. • Additional key concepts include: • work changes over time • setting goals helps get things done • we can take action to reach goals • the skills we learn now help to prepare us for future roles
About the Activities • Activities do not require a specific sequence . . . • Good for those who want to integrate with an existing program • Works for those who have experience planning & leading group activities • More difficult for those who need a more structured experience
Program Development Recommendations • Target elementary students. • Capitalize on high interest. • Create career-rich learning environments. • Encourage active exploration.
Program Development Recommendations • Provide exposure to role models. • Emphasize community service and volunteer experiences. • Once is not enough. • Use the media.
My Future(class poem written by 3rd grade students) When I grow up I think that I Could fly an airplane in the sky. Or be a doctor dressed in white And make the people feel all right. I might build things with my hands Or cook food with pots and pans. I could teach or work in a store Or put some carpet on the floor. Right now I don’t know what I’ll be. But whatever it is, it’s up to me.